My adorable and sweet grandcat, Brucie, the Munchkin, has been diagnosed with a fatty liver. I wondered if this might be a genetic thing. I’ve always been a bit suspicious of the problems indiscriminate breeding in cats can create. Well, the Munchkin, like so many other breeds, does have its genetic problems, but fatty liver isn’t typically one of them. This, we’re told, is often caused by obesity in cats. Sure, the Munchkin might have a tendency to gain excess weight because they may not be as active as a cat with longer legs, but just about any breed cat (some more than others) is prone to obesity, and susceptible to fatty liver.
What is fatty liver and how does it affect a cat? I said that a fatty liver can result from obesity, but guess what? It is also a sign that the cat is in starvation mode. He isn’t getting enough protein or the body isn’t processing it correctly. Stress can be a major factor in causing this illness. And rapid weight loss is one of the red flags for diagnosing this condition.
In Bruce’s case, he was obese—a roly-poly guy. And he has been under stress (we just didn’t understand how much stress) for a year—ever since his family came home with a set of twins. He is not a fan. Looking back, the family can see the signs that Bruce was not adjusting well to the noisy little intruders into his purrfect life.
Well, Bruce has been a very sick cat. He has seen several veterinarians and they’ve attempted various treatments. He’s doing better, but it’s taking time. Poor guy. It has been a long journey so far for Bruce and he’s still walking around with a feeding tube and a collar, but the veterinarian believes he will be okay—physically, anyway. I’m not sure what they’ll do to alleviate his stress. That’s for another blog post.
If your cat suddenly loses a lot of weight, she might be suffering from a fatty liver. Here’s a site loaded with information on the subject: https://vcahospitals.com/know-your-pet/liver-disease-fatty-liver-syndrome-in-cats